Orality and Writing

Carol Bakhos

in The Oxford Handbook of Jewish Daily Life in Roman Palestine

Published in print August 2010 | ISBN: 9780199216437
Published online September 2012 | | DOI:

Series: Oxford Handbooks in Classics and Ancient History

Orality and Writing

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  • Classical Studies
  • Classical History
  • Historical Archaeology



This article is concerned with social-anthropological approaches to literacy and orality. It tries to determine the extent cultural studies of orality in other societies can throw light on ancient Jewish literary, and explains how the studies of orality have contributed to the academic debate on the transmission of the Mishnah. It also assesses past studies on literacy and orality and presents some of the best ways to evaluate the available sources. The social contexts where writing and/or oral communication are used and the role of professional scribes are studied.

Keywords: social-anthropological approaches; literacy; orality; cultural studies; Mishnah; professional scribes

Article.  7617 words. 

Subjects: Classical Studies ; Classical History ; Historical Archaeology

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